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August 8, 2011 Central Restaurants Inc. of Perryville is bringing the Russo’s Coal-Fired Italian Kitchen franchise to Arkansas.

South Central Restaurants is purchasing the Village Inn building at 2490 Sanders Road in Conway to remake as Russo’s.

The Russo’s in Conway will be the corporation’s inaugural restaurant, as well as the first Russo’s in the state.

Renovations are scheduled to begin later this month, and Russo’s should open in October or November. The 5,500-SF facility will seat 255 guests.

South Central’s president, Buddy Metcalf, has plans to open more Russo’s locations, including the smaller version of the franchise, Russo’s New York Pizzeria. Cities on Metcalf’s radar for future restaurants are Jacksonville and Little Rock.

Russo’s, which has its corporate headquarters in Houston, specializes in made-from-scratch traditional Italian fare and New York-style pizza.

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